St James Quarter shoppers and staff evacuated from £1 billion new development

Shoppers and staff at Edinburgh’s St James Quarter were evacuated from the £1 billion new build just days after it opened to the pubic.

Wednesday, 7th July 2021, 9:43 pm

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Pictures taken at the new shopping centre show crowds of people waiting outside the building having been evacuated at about 1.30pm on Wednesday afternoon.

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A spokeswoman for St James Quarter confirmed people had been asked to leave the building, but it was a false alarm and the centre has returned to being open as normal.

The recent city-centre development, which took five years to build, flooded after storms and extreme rainfall hit Edinburgh on Sunday.

Pictures and videos taken inside the property showed water pouring down walls inside shops and entrances to stores flooded. Shoppers were also seen huddled together in the more sheltered areas of the building.

A statement from the team at St James Quarter at the time said the major leaks occurred in areas that are still under construction.

Crowds outside St James Quarter after shoppers and staff were evacuated picture: John Mowbray

It read: “Due to the severe weather in Edinburgh parts of the St James Quarter Galleria were cordoned off for safety reasons.

"St James Quarter has been built to fully integrate with the city's streetscape and is not an enclosed building.

"Whilst St James Quarter has been designed as a naturally ventilated environment and allows some rain to come into the galleria, the extent of water ingress in two sections was mainly caused by severe rainfall testing areas within the second phase of opening which are still under construction."

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